Igor Kromin |   Consultant. Coder. Blogger. Tinkerer. Gamer.

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I still don't have a PS4 but I needed another PS3 controller, so I had the idea of using the PS4 controller with my PS3. Doing a bit of research online reveals it is possible with some limitations. Overall, that is true, the limitations are quite severe at this point in time, but it looks like Sony is making it easier to use the new controllers with the recent playstation system updates.

My original PS3 controller stopped working well, sticking on certain buttons and generally not being very responsive. I didn't want to buy a fake PS3 controller because it would be just as bad (from previous experience), a PS4 controller was an attractive option because once I do get a PS4, I'd have two controllers right off the bat.

Quick comparison of the controllers - they look similar, however the PS4 controller has a trackpad, which will not work on PS3. The other major difference is that the Select button is now the Share button and the Start button is the Options button. The PS4 controller feels a bit bulkier and holds better in your hands too, it's ribbed sides make it feel much nicer to grip.
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Now, to get the PS3 to recognise the PS4 controller, you register it as a bluetooth device by going through the following menus:

Settings > Accessory Settings > Manage Bluetooth Devices > Register New Device



Prior to registering the device, you have to hold down the PS and the Share buttons at the same time.
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After a few moments, the controller's light will start to flash, it is now ready for pairing with the PS3.

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The PS3 should detect the device now and you can use it to control the menus right away.

Here are my findings on what works and what doesn't work:
  • PS button turns the Playstation ON, but will not turn it off
  • L2 and R2 buttons do not work
  • Rumble does not work
  • Share button works as the Select button
  • Options button works as the Start button
  • Other buttons and sticks work as per usual, including R3 and L3


-i

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